March 02, 2021

420

Well, it would be bad enough if America was just shooting itself in the foot, but it looks like it's hell-bent on blowing its brains out. It all started in the obscure circles of postmodernism, which was more of a French intellectual fashion than anything serious. There is no such thing as truth, everything is a text, all texts are equivalent, and so on. Then it made its way across the Atlantic, and as American academics are just like all Americans--empty, and in need of an ism to fill the soul--it got hopelessly lionized. ("Give us the Word, Derrida!" cried the faculties of Yale and elsewhere.) Slowly, it spread to the culture at large. For the masses, Holocaust denial was as legitimate as solid, Holocaust evidence. Wearing sweat shirts that said "Camp Auschwitz" was offensive to some, but it's possible that millions were OK with it. "Stop the Steal" was more legitimate than the lack of any evidence of fraud in the 2020 election. Or, for millions, equally legitimate. In my last years of undergraduate teaching, students had no idea as to what the difference was between an argument and an opinion, and even my grad students at Johns Hopkins (circa 1999) were not quite sure what constituted evidence. (I knew it when I was a junior in high school.) For most Americans, if you're on the side of the 'angels', you must be right. Of course, different people had different angels--a bit of a problem, that.

I'm sorry, but when a nation has reached this point, it has nowhere to go but down the drain.

-mb

195 Comments:

Anonymous Rockwell N. Role said...

There is an argument for the basis of American mindlessness:
its sources are just two, fundamentalist religion and the
excessive reliance on the computer to offer instant data.
As to lunatic religion, it is the foundation of the nation
and inhibits rationalism and discourse based on facts. The
computer has the miracle of providing instant date/information
and leaves it to the user to fully understand what it all means
and what it implies. For this there is not much training, but
there is faith that Artificial Intelligence will obviate the
need for it. Clearly, this implies that your blog will be a
source of relevance for the coming years and possibly the
inspiration of many sitcoms chronicling the idiocy of it all.

7:50 PM  
Blogger Joe McIlnen said...

Dr. Berman,
You’re being way too negative here. Our nation is not going down the drain. Quite the contrary. And here is proof.
Listen to this guy! Listen to all the “concrete” and “intellectual” things he says for a full 13 minutes in his newest video. Our lives here in the United States are so much better because of this excellent “coach”, this “guru”, this “template” and “symbol” of American success. LOL!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rgk7MJEQUhQ

8:09 PM  
Anonymous Noura said...

“I have as much authority as the Pope, I just don’t have as many people who believe it.” George Carlin https://inspirationfeed.com/george-carlin-quotes/

“The heroes of declining nations are always the same—the athlete, the singer or the actor. The word ‘celebrity’ today is used to designate a comedian or a football player, not a statesman, a general, or a literary genius.” The Fate of Empires - Sir John Glubb - Listen on Youtube: https://bit.ly/3qkJbQQ or Read here: https://bit.ly/2XKKIDr .

People like Tony Robbins, Joel Osteen, Oprah, Jordan Peterson, Elon Musk etc. present themselves as gurus with answers to serious issues, but they are actually entertainers in my opinion. They fall in the same category as Kanye West and Kim Kardashian. This proverb comes to mind when I think of them “Empty vessels make the most noise”. Only in a world of children could such people be taken seriously. It seems that as America collapses, so do the minds of its citizens, or maybe it’s the other way around. People become incapable or unwilling to grapple with reality. This need to escape is a fertile ground for charlatans to flourish while those who are interested in discussing the root of the issues are pushed aside. Never has the connection been so clear for me between what I am experiencing in my daily life and what I am seeing on the news. This blog is incredibly helpful in providing evidence that America is going nowhere. I am impressed with the kind of mental gymnastics some people are willing to go through to pretend that America still has a future. I’ve resigned myself to the fact that almost no one in my circle, except this blog, is interested in reality.

8:43 PM  
Blogger meangenekaz said...

Hola a los Waferes,

Professor Berman - thanks for the terrific post of the great Julian Bream. That was inspirational, coming back to the blog after our short break. Glad you're back.

I had the good fortune of finding Bream's recording:

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Julian-Bream-plays-Granados-Albeniz-Music-of-Spain-Vol-5-RCA-Red-Seal-cd

I took the cd to Southeast Alaska for three months in 2017. On a typical rainy day in Ketchikan I stopped at a thrift store and found a copy for $1. I bought it. (That's one good thing about amerika in decline - great books and recordings can be had for next to nothing.)

It is a sublime recording. When I made my way to Houston the following spring I returned my brother's copy. Thanks for the loan, bro. Highly recommended to all Wafers. Cures what ails ye.

9:42 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Noura-

The fact that two of the greatest poopy-heads of our time, Kanye and Kim, are adored by millions really says it all, no?

Joe-

But the problem is that he's a poopy-head, no?

Rock-

Thanks for the compliment. I wd love 2c a Sitcom entitled "At Home with the Berm." I'd be sitting around, sorting out my laundry for the laundromat, or preparing chicken enchiladas. However, in future, if you cd provide some links for your ideas, that wd be a gd thing. We are a crowd that's big on evidence.

gene-

I studied classical guitar for several yrs, and I remember playing 1 or 2 pieces by Bach, but I can't remember if that included the "Little Prelude in C." Chances are, Bream's version of it was a tad smoother than my own. I do regret, however, never having studied the lute. Bream died last August, BTW.

mb

10:23 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

ps: Neera Tanden's hopes for being budget director have bitten the dust. Note that she has ties to big business, including Wall St. and Silicon Valley. Let's call a spade a spade: she's a corporate poopy-head.

mb

10:43 PM  
Anonymous Nadine Bupkis said...

I find it astonishing how none of the postmodernist philosophers or their academic acolytes - nearly all of whom were secularists - realized the spread of postmodernism would lead to a resurgence of religious fanaticism and the dawn of the New Age movement. Gee, who would have thought rejecting logic, evidence and truth would provide fertile ground for batshit crazy religious extremism? Once you dispense with logic, evidence and truth, belief and subjective perceptions are all you have left. Belief disconnected from logic, evidence and truth leads to things like the Westboro Baptist Church. Subjective perceptions disconnected from logic, evidence and truth lead to the popularity of New Age charlatans like Oprah.

11:46 PM  
Anonymous Art Baker said...

I do not want to read any more comments denying that America
is still the country of opportunity for the little guy.

https://ca.news.yahoo.com/trump-cpac-fundraising-210053686.html

12:36 AM  
Anonymous K-Dog said...

'American academics are just like all Americans--empty, and in need of an ism to fill the soul.' How true this is, and we are very short of quality isms from which to choose. No truth and since there is no truth, anything goes. For people into me-ism (Americans) this is an ideal situation. So ideal that snooty French ideas that would otherwise be rejected for simply being French are enshrined.

1:06 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

K-Dog-

Meanwhile, the French moved on to other things a long time ago, while our universities (and America) are deconstructing themselves to death. Sacre bleu!

mb

5:10 AM  
Blogger Art McTeagle said...

Trump is now the golden calf, the idol before which the GOP prostrate themselves.

5:25 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Art-

When I was wrtg the Twilight bk, in the late 90s, having realized that the US had no future, it never occurred to me that a key factor in our collapse might be the serious competition of a completely alternative reality, one that had no relationship to actual reality. I mean, this does not describe the Roman situation, nor any other collapse I know about (tho I'm not an expert in this area, like Toynbee, for example). But in the US case, in any event, it seems quite obvious: if half the country can actually believe, contrary to the facts, that Biden stole the election, and that Trumpi is the man to take us to a glorious future, then what hope can there possibly be, for this sad and frivolous nation? Sooner or later, reality will assert itself, even while Trump and the deluded 50% are living in an unreal world; or rather, *because* they are lvg in such a world. When Trumpaloni got elected in 2016, I said this was our domestic Suez Moment. But now it seems like Suez Moment(a), while we are waiting for Suez Moment(b): the irreparable breakdown of the entire system. And it may be accompanied by the foreign Suez Moment, involving Chinese competition/opposition coupled with the whole world recognizing that the American Century (Luce) is over, and that we are going the way of all empires, historically speaking.

Biden and the Dems and the progs can slow the process down a bit, but they certainly cannot reverse it. Trumpi and the GOP jokers who are buying into the alt. reality (to save their careers) will accelerate it. So I guess it depends on whether you prefer slow or fast collapse. Midterm elections will give Biden et al. a gd slap in the face. As for 2024, Rom Mittney has already predicted a Trump victory, and he may be rt.

mb

6:28 AM  
Blogger CB said...

The Covid vaccines have arrived in the workplace. I work in healthcare, but not directly with patients. I opted not to get vaccinated as well as a handful of others. After the second vaccine was given, four recipients called out sick or left early. An "Office Space" style meeting was held with the manager essentially calling the people who opted out "conspiracy theorists." Never mind that over two decades we have seen Big Pharma kill or maim people with drugs that were then removed from the market. The messenger RNA "vaccine " has been in development for about a decade with unsuccessful trials and an inability to find a market until Covid 19 hit. After the meeting I tried to converse with another person who opted out and she went on a bizarre rant about Dump. How he was the only one fighting for us and he didn't take a salary, blah blah blah. Anyway, I respect people's right to get vaccinated but resent being called an anti vaxxer for daring to question the narrative. I recently started reading the Covid 19, The Great Reset the leader of the World Economic Forum. If Covid is indeed being used as an opportunity for the elites, I'd like to know what that entails.

8:38 AM  
Anonymous Jacko said...

Boy oh boy,

My son's teachers in virtual schooling are neglecting reading Mark Twain for Toni Morrison instead, saying "Huck Finn" is racist.

Is Toni Morrison even a fine writer? Always thought she was of Oprah-recommended caliber, and not worth her salt.

- J

9:41 AM  
Anonymous Meredith said...

John Gray on Covid for The NewStatesman: https://www.newstatesman.com/world/2021/03/can-humanity-conquer-virus

9:55 AM  
Anonymous Grimme said...

Goodman/Berman:

This was a somewhat reasonable review of the new Peterson. Only thing I disagree w/ Berman on was his dependence on benzos, many great philosophers w/ great outlooks have had demons. I'm just happy he found the (excruciating) treatment to get healthy.

https://amp.theguardian.com/books/2021/mar/02/beyond-order-by-jordan-peterson-review-more-rules-for-life

11:33 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Jacko-

These teachers are Americans, wh/means they are ignorant assholes, and only know how to follow a trend. You might try Jas Baldwin (or Langston Hughes) instead.

mb

12:09 PM  
Anonymous Callie said...

Such a shame

https://www.theguardian.com/film/2021/mar/03/allen-v-farrow-woody-allen-mia-farrow-documentary-is-pure-pr-why-else-would-it-omit-so-much

Allen might not be the apex of morality but he's a fine filmmaker and most artists are pretty huge oddballs.

12:47 PM  
Blogger Gunnar said...

Greetings MB y Wafers, took a break from GBOE to immerse myself in Trump’s coup attempt (why call it an insurrection @ this point?) over the past five years I’ve learnt as much as I care to know about the drowning USA, (watching a sinking titanic is hardly anything to be angry about). I’m bowing out of Trump Round II, no thanks - on to better pursuits. This Proverb sums it up perfectly for me esp “as a dog returns to it’s vomit...”

https://biblehub.com/niv/proverbs/26.htm

12:54 PM  
Blogger Tim2 said...

Good day Wafers

Just for fun .. putting the human species and all the trials and
tribulations we have encountered since our existence into perspective.

From this view an individual might be referenced
as no bigger than a grain of sand and that might be generous.

https://www.nasa.gov/feature/jpl/pale-blue-dot-revisited

1:46 PM  
Blogger Jack Lattemann said...

A recent poll by a political science research project Bright Line Watch found that Americans support receiving stimulus checks but little else. However , a significant find was the support for dividing the country into five regions – Pacific, Mountain, Heartland, South, and Northeast. One-third of voters identified as Republicans supported the idea, while 21 percent of Democrats supported break-it-up.
No mention of the support for bew wars. Bright Line Watch is a group of political scientists formed “to monitor democratic practices, their resilience, and potential threats.”

https//www.studyfinds.org/stimulus-check-secession-americans-agree-split-country-into-regions

1:55 PM  
Anonymous John S said...

Dr. Berman, Wafers. There is a curious thing I’ve notice in countless prog books published both in the past and present, that I call the “last chapter” phenomena. You find in this in writers like Chomsky, Taibbi, Krugman, Hedges, Stiglitz, Michael Moore, Thom Hartmann to name a few off the top of my head and countless others. The topics can be large like economic inequality, environmental destruction, war, racism or more localized like gerrymandering, corporate welfare, voting rights in certain states, growth of hate group violence or gun purchases. What they all seem to have in common is, say the first eleven chapters accurately diagnose the problem which you might quibble at the edges, if it is a competent writer most of the facts will be more or less hard to deny.

But then a curious thing happens. In chapter 12 or the epilogue, suddenly everything the author said and diagnosed goes out the window, and a flurry of Yankee can-do optimism fills the pages with a to do list for us to complete which acts like a deux ex machina which will fix everything that is wrong and leave us with a warm fuzzy feeling when we finish the book. Suddenly all of the hardcore analysis is replaced by an unblinking naiveté that makes you wonder if a different author finished the book or they had a religious experience before they finished the book. Maybe pessimistic books can’t be published, like scientists say if you add an equation to a book, the sales automatically will be halved. Or maybe progs aren’t fans of tragedy, they need the story to be a comedy like a Rube Goldberg contraption that is undone in the end, or they have been programmed that all stories need to have happy endings, because the reality of what they have spelled out can’t be consciously accepted by the prog mind.

2:37 PM  
Anonymous Shadow Scout said...

Dr. Berman, you make a great point about America’s unique form of collapse—into mass delusion and unreality. Is there a historical precedent for this? Maybe the Mayans sacrificing more people to their sun god to try to save their corn crops?

The delusions of the Trumpians and Qanonites are pretty obvious, but of course the progs have their own collective unreality, propagated by NPR, NYT, Big Tech, Elon Musk, the “green tech will save us”, “fully automated gay space communism” crowd, etc. John Michael Greer discusses some of this in his latest post: https://www.ecosophia.net/strange-days-dawning/ He notes how a trendy prog environmental magazine is calling for stories that promote “hope and intersectionality” – i.e. fashionable delusions, as if that is going to stop climate change or peak oil.

Jung called these “psychic epidemics”, and that’s what it feels like to me: “The gigantic catastrophes that threaten us today are not elemental happenings of a physical or biological order, but psychic events. To a quite terrifying degree we are threatened by psychic epidemics.” Will America’s collapse be from terminal psychic epidemics, a total divorce from reality? Seems quite possible from where I sit.

2:41 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Shadow-

But that was already part of the Mayan religion, not a genuine alternative reality. And the prog 'religion' is, similarly, more of the same. Trumpi's alternative, on the other hand, is something new and postmodern: a total divorce from reality.

John-

Yeah...I discussed this 11th-hr phenomenon a # of times over the past few yrs, both here and in various interviews. All the people you mention are patriots, so they can't give up the myth of American exceptionalism in the face of their own facts: that it's over, and the country has no viable future. This blog, on the other hand, is simply interested in what is, not in patriotic or anti-patriotic positions. Positions are pretty much crap.

Jack-

It'll probably take abt 20 more yrs, but I'm guessing that secession is in the pipeline.

Gunnar-

Crucial question is whether the vomit is hot or cold. I personally can't stand cold vomit. Yuck.

Callie-

I think it's pretty clear that the makers of this film knew what their conclusion was b4 they even began the research. As a result, what we have is a hatchet job, and a smear campaign.

mb

3:02 PM  
Blogger Jamie said...

John S, completely agree about the whiplash you get from the writers you mentioned who maintain their belief in America. No idea how they immerse themselves in their research and still “believe” in America. Wonder if any know it’s failing but won’t publicly admit it because they lack moral courage to be Dr Berman with his Wafter trilogy. Jacko, the attack on literature literally breaks my heart as books saved me during adolescence. It’s like how Dr B wrote above about deconstructing everything to death. It will eventually be literal death. Dr B, as a cellist there is nothing more superb than Bach. Its lovely simplicity reminds me of the Japanese arts you talk about in Neurotic Beauty.

Many of my posts castigate the progs over Bubbas. The reason for this is my own former identification as a prog. I thought because I played cello, spoke a second language, took international trips with my family growing up, ate certain foods, etc that I was better than the Bubbas. I was such an arrogant asshole and bought into that ideology fully in college and grad school. I thought all of America’s woes were because Republicans and ignorant people in flyover country. I am so ashamed at how gullible I was. It wasn’t until spending a year living in Egypt that I started realizing how off my thinking was. I developed a keen respect for traditional cultures and knew something was missing in my own. This is how I found Dr B’s books by literally searching google for “America is a failure.” Curious if any others Wafers would share how they became Wafers. As always, thanks to everyone. You guys are my sanity in a world of mania.

4:35 PM  
Blogger alex carter said...

MB - thanks for the Julian Bream video it was wonderful. My father loved classical guitar (and Hawaiian "slack key" and a ton of other stuff) and I grew up hearing music like that.

Interestingly, he never seemed to have picked up a guitar himself and learned even the basics. I think it was a fear of failure, if he learned to play and made mistakes - as all students do - it would hurt his ego. So he settled for an expensive stereo and lots of records.

Later, in my mid-20s I started a classical guitar class at my local jr. college. The guitars used were "friendly" and easy to play, and I learned that classical is built of of little building blocks to make it easy. But did I stick with it? Noooo, I just had to get a Stratocaster and an amp, which I never played, after dropping the class.

4:56 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Jamie-

A personal story. Yrs ago I dated a woman who was a cellist. She may have had the key to my apt., I can't remember, but one day I came home and she was there. She had put Bach's Unaccompanied Cello Suites--a vinyl LP, 1st one--on my stereo, and was listening to it (Yo Yo Ma). Tears were streaming down her face. I think she was in her early 30s. What American woman of that age, today, wd have heard of Bach, or Yo Yo Ma, or be moved to tears by that music? 20-25 women, nationwide?

mb

4:58 PM  
Anonymous MSteibel said...

I would say that silicon valley is very controlled - I want to use the word co-opted by international banking which includes the Fed Reserve as a member controlling interest for obviously very powerful and likely old families. It would be interesting to see a family history of people like L. Fink and how they arrived at so much power - debt settlement and acquisition for the bankrupt country.

The election does seem to have been stolen. There are weak people coping with this in the wrong ways naturally, denial, unrealistic narratives for justice, etc., - that the Grande Orange One wasn't himself controlled swamp opposition and a puppet (just not their first choice). Look at who Trump pardoned. Look at how the "patriots" were treated compared to the SJW's etc. Dark dark times ahead regardless.

5:52 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Steibel-

Do you have evidence for any of this? This blog is not big on the broadcasting of opinions. Anyone can have an opinion, after all; that's no big deal. What *is* a big deal is presenting links, references, etc. to reliable sources (not nut-job conspiracy crap) backing up one's opinions. Tu comprends?

mb

6:37 PM  
Anonymous Democritus said...

Climate change is one of those topics you just can't get your typical overfed, overweight, violent and armed American to focus on. After all, there's so many more interesting things going on like Trump's coup (v 2.0) this week, Kanye, Biden's diversity appointments, etc. "The Atlantic" has an interesting article about climate change:

https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2021/03/extreme-climate-change-history/617793/

It argues that human civilization evolved during a relatively "quiet" time in geological history. The writer posits that there is no reason to expect, on the geological scale, that this quiescent period should persist.

One wonders how capitalism will co-opt this impending tragedy. I remember reading in the Financial Times (sorry, can't find the reference) a decade ago about investors licking their chops over the new Arctic sea lanes (and Arctic oil, of course) that will open up once all that pesky ice melts away.

8:31 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Demo-

Let's add the exciting life and times of Meghan Markle to your list. What cd be more relevant to the various crises going on today?

mb

10:42 PM  
Blogger Joe McIlnen said...

Dr. Berman & Wafers,
Kudos to Republican Governor Greg Abbott of Texas for ending the mask mandate in his all-American conservative state. Now freedom and the pursuit of happiness can finally reign in the Lone Star State. Is the rumor true that he got some advice and acted on it from this country’s greatest living intellectual and this brilliant man’s thoughts below on Covid? Dr. Berman, what do you think?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EMjZKg5_naI

11:01 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Joe-

Clearly, one of America's greatest minds today.

mb

11:18 PM  
Blogger Brian said...

Folks,
I do not know how much more my brain-stem and stomach can take

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IOxJhVlpi-M&lc=Ugy75dU0UIacbovrxFV4AaABAg.9KSKfqAzJBS9KScGDorZHc

I wanna laugh and throw up at the same time!

1:15 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Brian-

Well, talk abt an alternative reality, eh? Looks like Joe fell on his head. Magical thinking: if you keep repeating 'Unity' often enuf, eventually you'll have it.

This reminds me of a Gerald Ford campaign of many yrs ago, that everyone needed to wear a button that said WIN, which stood for Whip Inflation Now! Yeah, that'll do the trick.

How, and exactly when, did we turn into a nation of clowns?

mb

1:25 AM  
Anonymous Nadine Bupkis said...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5NBqLyTaiFo

Biden's wife wore a scrunchy and bought chocolate...and limousine liberals are fawning all over her, and the Biden Administration, for this heroic deed. That's right, they're singing the praises of the Biden Administration BECAUSE BIDEN'S WIFE BOUGHT A BAR OF CHOCOLATE. They called her purchase "relatable", "quirky" and "refreshingly normal". Cause, this totally relates to Biden's policies, right? I'm sure the people he's murdering in Syria are ecstatic over this purchase.

These limousine liberals might be the dumbest and most delusional people in the history of humanity. They are definitely the first group of people who think purchasing a single bar of chocolate can help heal a nation of 330 million people. This is exactly like thinking you can singlehandedly stop climate change by picking your nose. If you believed the latter, you'd rightly be put in a loony bin, but if you think Mrs. Biden's purchase will help heal America, half the nation will think you sagacious. I think this says it all.

1:27 AM  
Anonymous Art Baker said...

For widespread lunacy one should return to the 1930s to get a
sense of America as it is now and what will come. For this
Lasswell is mandatory reading.

https://archive.org/details/psychopathologyp00lass/page/n5/mode/2up

3:15 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Nadine-

I dunno...it seems like cutting-edge social chg, to me. Face it: progs know what counts.

mb

3:28 AM  
Anonymous Birney Zouave said...

Dr. B:

RE: Biden and "unity." Thomas E. Dewey also went big on "unity" in his presidential campaign in 1948; it didn't work out so well for him. Below are a few quotes from his nomination acceptance speech, a link to an article about the speech with a transcript, and a YouTube video of part of the speech.

"United we can match this challenge with depth of understanding and largeness of spirit; with a unity which is above recrimination, above partisanship, above self-interest."

"We are a united party. Our nation stands tragically in need of that same unity."

"If this unity is to be won and kept, it must have great dimensions. Its boundaries must be far above and beyond politics. Freedom can be saved —it can only be saved— if free men everywhere make this unity their common cause."

https://rbscp.lib.rochester.edu/zach-harkenrider-thomas-e-dewey-consensus-liberal

https://youtu.be/d6GpQr_zp50

7:17 AM  
Anonymous Orb said...

The mind of God? The problem with deifying Stephen Hawking

A new biography argues the iconic physicist was shamelessly self-promoting and his reputation overrated

https://www.prospectmagazine.co.uk/magazine/stephen-hawking-celebrity-physicist-flaws

7:27 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Birn-

Hot air, all of it. And to top it off, the substantive diffs between the 2 parties is minimal. Only Americans are stupid enuf to not understand this, to think these elections are abt "the soul of the nation." What soul? What cant! Europeans, and Gore Vidal, get/got it immediately.

mb

7:30 AM  
Anonymous Northern Johnny said...

Hi Dr. and WAFERS:

A lot of nonsense has been published about the Jan 6. event in Washington (I will not glorify it with the term 'insurrection'), but this research based article on the identities of a majority of the participants is worth noting: https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2021/mar/04/us-capitol-attack-individual-extremist-far-right-groups

Key quote: "A report from George Washington University’s Center on Extremism has analyzed court records about cases that have been made public. It found that more than half of people facing federal charges over the 6 January attack appear to have planned their participation alone, not even coordinating with family members or close friends. Only 33 of the 257 alleged participants appear to have been part of existing 'militant networks', including the Proud Boys and the Oath Keepers anti-government militia."

Whether the report is justified in concluding, as it does, that these findings underscore "the ongoing risk of lone actor terror attacks" though I can't say.

One question is whether the individualized nature of the Jan. 6 event is actual novel, or whether this has been true of social and political events in the USA and other countries for a while now?

-Northern Johnny

7:35 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Orb-

Gd ref, thanks. Hawking was hilarious in his appearances on "The Big Bang Theory."

mb

10:44 AM  
Anonymous Noura said...

John S, I’ve also been perplexed by how the progs could so clearly describe the issues with America and still be so optimistic. Can you imagine what would happen if they allowed the evidence to speak for itself without putting a positive spin on it at the end? It’s probably impossible because America is their religion, they have this personal agenda to save America. This fits well in the mainstream propaganda and the imperialist mindset of trying to control how people should think and feel about America. In addition to Dr. Berman’s work and the info shared on this blog, some of the best documentaries about America I’ve seen were by non-Americans. I suspect it’s because they’re not burdened by the need to protect American exceptionalism in the face of their own contradictory facts. John Pilger is Australian and his following 2016 documentary was eye-opening: The Coming War on China, Youtube https://bit.ly/3qnUZSq or Vimeo https://bit.ly/38RgVzj

Jamie, How I became a Wafer: I started my research late 2020. I listened to a lot of experts and based on what they were saying, my conclusion was that America was over, but everyone kept talking about how we were going to turn this around. I thought I was crazy for thinking otherwise but the feeling of unease would not go away, so I kept looking for answers. I discovered Chris Hedges and though his research was helpful, there was something off about how he was talking about turning things around with such a sad look of defeat on his face. I read a negative review of one of his books that recommended Dr. Berman instead. I was impressed by how Dr. Berman explained the connection between America’s value system and its decline. I had never heard anyone say that before. The evidence is so clear that it’s impossible for anyone without an agenda not to understand.

11:10 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

John-

Cdn't run it (24-hr rule).

Noura-

Ontological blockage: the curse of America's intellectual elite.

mb

1:46 PM  
Blogger Gunnar said...

In the midst of all the insanity shit like this happens and few if any will notice, “He got what he deserved! See what happens when you ignore a summons,” I can hear it now and it makes about as much sense as anything that can be said.

https://www.denverpost.com/2021/03/04/colorado-jail-suicide-jackson-maes/

I discovered the Wafer way in 2016 and haven’t looked back since, I have never been censored no one has ever got in my face and how I do pity the poor lost trolls b/c w/o the wisdom of this blog I’d b lost (I agree w/ MB karma is wasted on these unconscious assholes.)

2:06 PM  
Anonymous CulturallyAware said...

I agree with Nadine about "limousine liberals" a term I hadn't heard. These people are insufferably stupid and sanctimoniously self-absorbed - G. Carlin had that saving the planet bit. Their major cognitive dissonance coping skills are likely due to TV brainwashing and the educational dumbing down (all green all the time promoted in the schools) etc.

Yet Noura thinks progressives are culturally spot on about things - except for the pathological positivity 24/7 cope that ignores all the obvious hopelessness? I lump progs and libs together so what am I missing - regarding specific rhetorical differences?

2:51 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Culturally-

Yeah, spot-on until the final chapter, which rejects all the previous spot-on. I think that was her pt.

Gunnar-

All modesty aside, this is The Only Blog You'll Ever Need (TOBYEN).

mb

3:18 PM  
Blogger meangenekaz said...

Hola a los Waferes,

@ Jamie - I watched C-Span Books one morning in Las Vegas, Nevada in 2000. Dr. Berman was the author being interviewed. I took notes. What MB said resonated. I went to the local Borders Books and bought "The Twilight of American Culture". I have re-read it many times. I've struggled to the surface, overcoming my conditioning. Playing and singing music, for and with others, has been essential and indispensable to my survival. Looking back on my life, I realized I have always felt this Wafer way. I mean, since the age of four or three.

@ Mike Kelley - Great to hear from you again. I enjoyed our conversation at 6thANYWSM. But I lost your number. The subsequent drive from DC up to Northern New Hampshire took us east of Lake Ticonderoga. Maybe next time I will go through your area.

@ Dr. Berman - The anecdote about your cellist friend's emotional response led me to look at this. A short read.

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/the-new-brain/201709/when-music-makes-you-cry

To be continued - meanwhile Wafers, Rave On!



4:13 PM  
Blogger dermot said...

Re: greatest nation on earth, 7 year old girl raises hundreds of thousands selling lemonade to pay for brain cancer surgery (file under: PERSEVERANCE PORN)
https://www.today.com/parents/girl-7-sells-lemonade-help-pay-brain-surgery-t210529

Re: progs and religion, there was always a xian substrate smuggled into Enlightenment:
https://www.powells.com/book/heavenly-city-of-the-eighteenth-century-philosophers-9780300000177

The new heaven had to be located somewhere within the confines of the earthly life ... the salvation of mankind must be attained, not by some outside, miraculous, catastrophic agency...but by man himself, by the progressive improvement made by the efforts of successive generations of men; and in this cooperative enterprise posterity had its undeniable uses: posterity would complete what the past and the present had begun...the Philosophers called in posterity to exorcise the double illusion of the Christian paradise and the golden age of antiquity. For the love of God they substituted love of humanity; for the vicarious atonement the perfectibility of man through his own efforts; and for the hope of immortality in another world the hope of living in the memory of future generations.
...the doctrine of progress, of perfectibility, became an essential article of faith in the new religion of humanity...the utopian dream of perfection...having been long identified with the golden age or...life eternal in the Heavenly City of God...was at last projected into the life of man on earth and identified with the desired and hoped-for regeneration of society.

4:28 PM  
Anonymous Murrow said...

The woke battle for cultural imperialism

https://unherd.com/2021/03/the-woke-battle-for-cultural-imperialism/

4:52 PM  
Anonymous Grimme said...

https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2021/04/what-happened-to-jordan-peterson/618082/

'What Happened to Jordan Peterson?

Adored guru and reviled provocateur, he dropped out of sight. Now the irresistible ordeal of modern cultural celebrity has brought him back.'

Good writer pokes the holes in JP's philosophy. Again, the focus on his addiction is a little nasty but oh well.

5:06 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Murrow-

V. gd essay, thanks.

dermot-

That Carl Becker bk is one of the 20 most impt bks I ever read. Also check out Jean Seznec.

gene-

7th Wafer Summit will be in DC on May 22, 1 pm. Venue to be announced. Can you attend? If so, after I write a definite announcement in April, send me an email message, and I'll give you the venue. Wd be great 2 c.u. again.

mb

6:10 PM  
Anonymous Silva said...

...in other words: billionaire burns money and rockets in vanity project...

Japanese billionaire looking for people who ‘push the envelope’ for moon flight

https://amp.theguardian.com/world/2021/mar/03/japanese-billionaire-looking-for-people-who-push-the-envelope-for-moon-flight

7:10 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Sil-

There's a lot of neurosis in Japan:

https://www.amazon.com/Neurotic-Beauty-Outsider-Looks-Japan/dp/1621342107/ref=sr_1_11?dchild=1&keywords=morris+berman&qid=1614907393&s=books&sprefix=morri%2Cstripbooks&sr=1-11

mb

8:24 PM  
Blogger Jamie said...

Dr B, what a lovely story about your former girlfriend. That you would date a woman of such emotional depth is hardly surprising. I would expect no less from you. My comparison to the craft tradition of the Tokugawa era in relation to Bach’s Six Suites for Cello is because of its relative simplicity on the technical level. Artistic mastery of the suite is an entirely different matter and requires extreme, even obsessive, attention and practice. It’s unforgiving in its demands for perfection and leaves the cellist with nowhere to hide. Starting at thirteen, Pablo Casals practiced the suites religiously for over ten years in his quest for absolute perfection. He subsequently brought them back from musical obscurity into the beloved pieces of today. He was the first to record them but I think Yo Yo Ma’s interpretation is the absolute best. Literally every time I sit down to play, I think of Casals saying “intonation is a matter of conscience.” This seems a lot of like the Tokugawa tradition. A fun book about it all is Eric Silbin’s The Cello Suites. Also thanks to Noura and Gunnar for sharing their journey to Waferdom.

8:27 PM  
Blogger Joe McIlnen said...

Dr. Berman,
One of our Wafers gave a list of “successful role models to admire and emulate” for the dumb American public. It included such hustling hucksters here in the Dysfunctional States of America like Tony Robbins, Joel Osteen, and Oprah.
Here’s another member of the Hucksters Club. She markets herself as a self-proclaimed “financial expert”. She’s someone to whom we annoyingly and incessantly are subjected. She even has made the Time Magazine 100 List of Influential People. Her latest “advice” is how to use our upcoming stimulus checks; and she gives her “opinions” on Gamestop and the stock market. Ya gotta love it how the American public falls for persons like her and these other jokers.

p.s. Do you think she and Tony Robbins should team up and do a joint man-and-woman “personal self improvement” seminar? LOL.

https://finance.yahoo.com/news/worst-ways-next-stimulus-check-154400568.html

https://finance.yahoo.com/news/suze-orman-game-stop-frenzy-is-a-game-not-investing-165606854.html

11:04 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Joe-

I refer u once again to P.T. Barnum's favorite quote. Meanwhile, do you realize how many people need the famous Wafer Slapping/Urine Combination Treatment? (WSUCT) It beggars the imagination.

mb

11:14 PM  
Anonymous Malleus Maleficarum said...

From the "Quelle surprise" department:

U.S. Vaccine Hoarding Is Alienating the World

Bloomberg’s vaccine tracker illustrates exactly how out of the norm the U.S.’s behavior has been. The country has already delivered 24 shots for every 100 Americans. In comparison, China has given 3.7 for every 100 of its residents, Russia 2.7, and India 1.1.

Yet, unlike Biden, the leaders of India, Russia and China have already begun shipping millions of doses abroad. This week, half a million shots of the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine arrived in the Caribbean from India. Some two million doses have been delivered to Mexico, with the rest to follow this month. Argentina is getting 20 million doses of Russia’s Sputnik-V by the end of March.

7:25 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Malleus-

It's who we are!

mb

7:27 AM  
Anonymous Gloria said...

No Duh Dept.:

https://www.opensecrets.org/news/reports/capitalizing-on-conflict

Capitalizing on Conflict

"While it is well known that the U.S. spends enormous sums to keep the world's most powerful military humming, many Americans are unaware that a major part of the industry's business model is selling arms to other countries. Follow the $$$ in our report"

9:38 AM  
Anonymous Democritus said...

Republican newcomer Kim Klacik ran against Kweisi Mfume to fill deceased Representative Elijah Cummings' House seat last year. Klacik has no experience (just google her and read what pops up), and she had no hope of winning in the heavily Democratic district. But hey, a run would strengthen her conservative credentials and maybe land her a gig on Fox News. Working for her constituents (or even knowing what it is they need) was certainly not the priority. Well, this grifter finally met her match--a team of even griftier grifters. The story below describes how even though she raised a tidy sum for her House race, she lost most of it in the form of fees to media companies. The one nice constant in America: everyone is an asshole.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/md-politics/klacik-gop-campaign-donations/2021/03/02/76300fde-7077-11eb-85fa-e0ccb3660358_story.html

11:05 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Demo-

Well, at least 99%. But then as we declinists like to say, Bad Is Good.

mb

11:10 AM  
Anonymous John S said...

Dr. Berman, Wafers. A couple interesting talks on religion. Historian Yuval Harari talks about what new religion might arise in the future. He has a nice summary of the dominant “liberal” value system, much rosier than I would put it though, though he predicts it is headed for collapse. He points out that there may be a future biological split of humanity (access to genetic enhancement) to complement the ongoing bifurcation going on with radical inequality.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g6BK5Q_Dblo

Another - conversation with philosopher John Gray on his book “Seven Types of Atheism.” I put myself in the class of atheist that Gray mentions - the non-progressive/silent type rather than the predominant Dawkins/Harris type. He makes interesting point that modern liberal humanism notion of common humanity derives from monotheism notion of Imago Dei “made in the image of God,” so it isn’t clear that as the pull of religion decreases, that the notion of common human values won’t disappear too.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bFzWtlGJXsY

Both point out that liberal beliefs in free individuals with a common humanity, could disappear if technocratic leaders of the future that there is no reason why human castes are fine and natural, so back to slavery again. Perhaps H.G. Wells human division - Morlocks (spectacle makers/rulers/parasites) and Eloi (spectators/servants/hosts) is coming sooner than he imagined. Pretty scary stuff.

4:03 PM  
Anonymous CulturallyAware said...

I see.

I never get tired of making fun of progressive ideas though I'm probably belaboring things as they have manifested. However, if you don't mind and I've seen some posts here about the following, I've noticed that middle-aged women are really supportive of NPR-like ideas, masking up as much as possible, chiding non-maskers, etc. A friend's wife recently got mad at me for pointing out that there are racial differences (not just cultural - not just nature vs nurture). My friend just rolled his eyes as if I'm dumb enough to enter that territory. She responded angrily that people are all the same and yada yada yada. I've had enough of these encounters to make me think that now is the time to retreat to the forests of my youth and just not talk to anyone anymore particularly women. Less irreparable conflict. You can't win.

5:02 PM  
Anonymous down we go said...

It fits with American Exceptionalism that we would collapse in a way unique among history's empires, from the actions of a one of two major political parties intent on destroying from within the ideals and institutions upon which the Empire is based. https://nymag.com/intelligencer/article/trump-election-fraud-biden-pennsylvania-lawsuit-voting-transition.html

Another unique feature - America's inability to distinguish between reality/truth and fantasy/lies. I can't think of another Empire in which half its people desired to live in a world where up was down and black was white. On an individual level, people who are unable to relate to reality are diagnosed as psychotic. What call a nation when 1/2 its citizens meet that diagnosis willingly and wear it proudly?

5:52 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

down-

Doofus World.

mb

6:18 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Wafers-

For yrs I've been saying this guy is a piece of crap:

https://www.bollyinside.com/news/new-york-times-david-brooks-slammed-for-undisclosed-financial-ties-to-project-he-praised/

mb

6:28 PM  
Blogger alex carter said...

Culturally Aware - You know, I may mistakenly assume, that a given small troop of chimpanzees has more genetic diversity than all of mankind? Other than a few quirks like sickle-cell, we're a very genetically homogeneous species. We spread out over the earth so fast that we're a weedy, worldwide species with very slight variations. Like crows. Probably less diverse than crows, really, as crows in the US have a rougher sounding call than crows in Japan which to me sound like a person trying to imitate a crow.

Regardless of what The Bell Curve and Instauration magazine tell you, there's been no proven "racial" difference in intelligence and not even in athletic ability. Poor skinny black guys can run fast but surprise surprise, so can poor skinny white guys. The NBA was all black guys and Larry Bird in the 70s or so but now you see excellence from all "races".

7:08 PM  
Anonymous Noura said...

Magical thinking is so rampant that I thought it would be interesting to look up some articles about it. Magical thinking seems like a suicidal attempt to control reality or to escape it. The magical thinking article below includes a video which says “Children easily believe authority figures have supernatural powers.” This reminds me of the QAnon conspiracies in relation to Trump and Marjorie Taylor Greene, read more here: https://nyti.ms/30aUfVC

What is magical thinking and do we grow out of it? https://bit.ly/2PviLyR . Quoting from article:
“Developmental psychologist Jean Piaget first documented magical thinking in children and typically it should start to wane around the age of 10 years (give or take a couple of years either way). Children will start to question the feasibility of the mechanisms that lie behind the connections they make – … How can a politician influence the weather? Eventually we are supposed to grow up. And most of us like to believe that as adults, our opinions, understanding or attitudes are grounded in solid realistic principles. However, it may come as a huge shock that most adults (even extremely well educated ones) will hold on to their favourite magical thinking quirks, and/or quickly fall back on magical thinking – especially in times of high emotion/stress, or where clear links are difficult to elucidate… Certain aspects of magical thinking stay with most of us well into adulthood, probably because at the end of the day, we all have a tendency to see the world the way we want it to be, rather than the way it actually is.”

Maybe part of the collapse is that we’re running out of adults, so children end up in leadership roles and children are raising children. Then things get out of balance and we end up going way too far the wrong way.

7:10 PM  
Blogger TKR said...

Mr. Berman: I noticed in your 419 blog that you referred to Chris Hedges as a jackass. I was really surprised. I thought you two knew and had respect for each other. That is what I got from earlier articles where you wrote of him. I believe he wrote some book cover endorsements for some of your books. What happened? When did this change happen?

7:49 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

TKR-

You come rather late to the party, my friend. If you just jump in now, at 419, sure, it doesn't make much sense. But I don't have time to rehash the history 4u, and by now, I hafta confess that that history, and Hedges himself, are pretty boring. Only thing I can suggest is that you scroll thru the discussions of the last 50 or so posts; which of course wd tax your own time as well. Sorry I can't be of more help.

Noura-

Gd pts, altho magical thinking has some v. positive aspects as well. Check out my Reenchantment bk, and the ch. on Fellini in "Genio". Wm Blake might also be helpful in this regard: a life w/o wonder is no life at all.

mb

8:38 PM  
Blogger Gunnar said...

I really believe Dual Process if done right (as pigs fly) is the only positive way forward for poor ole' demented Uncle Sam.

WWJD (what would Jesus do?) Well, my imagination conjures up a cruel as nails hard core crewcut Jesus who spits out some parable like - "you're cured of conspicuous consumption!! now Pick Up Your Palllet and Walk you whining parasite!!"

https://www.bible.com/bible/111/JHN.5.NIV

10:56 PM  
Anonymous CT said...

John Gray reviews Witcraft: The Invention of Philosophy in English by Jonathan Rée in The New York Review of Books.
https://www.nybooks.com/articles/2021/03/25/philosophy-an-art-jonathan-ree-witcraft/

8:08 AM  
Anonymous Megan said...

Dr. Berman,

Speaking of your Reenchantment book, was Charles Taylor any kind of influence on your outlook? I've just started on his "A Secular Age", and so far it is rather interesting. It is basically an 800 page, in-depth look at how the West gradually acquired a "disenchanted", secular worldview as more or less our default mode of apprehending reality. In any case, I was curious what you think of him, assuming you are familiar with his work.





8:29 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Megan-

Not really. I may have read one or 2 of his essays, but not any of his bks.

mb

8:42 AM  
Anonymous Buck Jones said...

Court docs reveal planes used to shuttle Khashoggi's assassins to and from Istanbul were owned by the Saudi sovereign wealth fund courted by much of Silicon Valley, Hollywood and Wall St.

One of the planes was flying inside the US last October.
https://responsiblestatecraft.org/2021/03/03/saudi-sovereign-wealth-fund-planes-transported-khashoggi-kill-team/

12:11 PM  
Anonymous Noura said...

Deepfake Videos Are Getting Terrifyingly Real I NOVA I PBS
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T76bK2t2r8g
“Artificially intelligent face swap videos, known as deepfakes, are more sophisticated and accessible than ever.”

This seems to add fuel to the fire in an age of conspiracy theories, or maybe it doesn’t make any difference at this point.

2:07 PM  
Anonymous Michael King, Vancouver BC said...

Dr. Berman,
With the utmost respect, I have to say that I am aghast that a Wafer summit is being planned for 77 days in the future. I would love to attend but while there is an ongoing pandemic there is no way I would consider it. Vaccination rates are still low. There is little data indicating the timespan of the vaccines' efficacy. Being in indoor venues (with strangers) for any time over a few minutes is playing Russian Roulette, particularly if you are not wearing a mask (eating/drinking). There are many studies reporting the significant role of aerosols in virus transmission in indoor spaces, e.g. restaurants. Naked Capitalism is a great resource re: Covid science. To all: please be patient. We are at least a year away from a life anywhere near the old normal.

2:27 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Steibel-

What part of "We require evidence" did you not understand? I explicitly told you that this blog is not abt bloviating, broadcasting opinions w/o proof, and you pd no attn to this. On top of that, this is not a blog for bloviating abt international Zionist-Communist conspiracies, wh/to me is just warmed over Protocols of the Elders. As a result, you will not be hosted on this blog. There are thousands of antisemitic blogs out there for wh/you need no evidence for yr opinions at all. That's clearly where you belong. Good luck.

mb

2:33 PM  
Blogger Cyrillia Juniper said...

John Gray's answer to the social justice warriors. Maybe he was thinking of Chris Hedges? This piece is certainly a riposte to Hedges calls for revolution. A sample:

"But history has no lessons for the “woke”. To accept that revolution only multiplies injustice would destroy the meaning of their lives. The social justice movement is not based on errors in fact or reasoning. It is a cult, whose chief beneficiaries are the SJWs themselves."

https://unherd.com/2019/10/woke-revolutionaries-will-make-injustice-worse/

4:11 PM  
Anonymous CulturallyAware said...

I disagree with Alex Carter's opinion as an assessment of racial realities.
Races should be able to decide their own unique manifest destinies complete with aggregate talents and weaknesses without forced integration.

4:54 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Cult-

Possibly; but what is yr rationale for that? Any studies on the subject?

Cyr-

Well, I wd go this far w/Hedges: there are certain situations where revolutionary activity makes sense. As it turns out, present-day America is not one of them.

Michael-

Thanks for yr input. Actually, I'm the most threatened here, in that I'm old, and as of now don't plan to get vaccinated. Regarding the rest:
1. Final decision won't be made for another 5-6 wks, when I'll announce it on the blog. As of now, 6 people have signed up. Should half of them (or more) chg their minds, I'll cancel the event.
2. We can probably find a venue w/outdoor seating.
Anyway, we have some time yet.

mb

5:33 PM  
Blogger dermot said...

Handy page with info for people trying to leave or renounce US citizenship:
https://nomadcapitalist.com/2019/10/14/reasons-to-renounce-us-citizenship/
https://nomadcapitalist.com/2018/01/17/renounce-us-citizenship-ultimate-guide/
YT channel: https://www.youtube.com/c/nomadcapitalist/videos

Def. a libertarian / business POV, but still good info about holding onto SS / bank AC, etc.

5:46 PM  
Anonymous John S said...

Dr. Berman, Wafers. I was reading a bit about the latest cultural theatrics about Dr. Seuss, getting “banned.” It’s much ado about nothing since the books are still available and when a few of the books were pulled voluntarily from publication, the sales skyrocketed, wondered if it was a PR stunt to begin with. Anyway Dr. Seuss, Theodore Geisel was a man of his times, the racial and ethnic stereotypes in some of the books merely reflects those of the culture he was raised in, or those that Americans hold in general, and it was far less egregious than many of his contemporaries, but whatever. Interesting that you will never see a NY times article exploring what if any of Dr Seuss books promote American Exceptionalism or the American Dream, because of course there is nothing wrong with that whatsoever, not even something could even be contemplated in fact.

https://www.nytimes.com/2021/03/04/books/dr-seuss-books.html

But far more disturbing to me at least, was the last two minutes this new Jimmy Kimmel segment (link below) which broaches the topic. Random young people are asked a simple question, can you name a book, any book period, and astonishingly - not only do none of these people read, none could even name a single book, worse could not even speak of not reading in complete sentences? If this is a true sample of the average American kid, our doom in certain. No Jimmy Kimmel this isn’t funny, this is shameful beyond belief, disgraceful. And we are worried about Dr Seuss, give me a break?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-H4BBXt9GvM

5:51 PM  
Anonymous Oli said...

"How We've All Become Richard Nixon"

By Adam Curtis

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=k6-IuHtthcM&feature=youtu.be

6:24 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

John-

There is an endless preoccupation w/meaningless drivel today, while the spine of the nation is breaking from real problems that are ignored. Constant flaps over this or that diversity issue, who will translate Amanda Gorman's poem into Dutch, what did Dr. Seuss say, etc. etc. You see what a clueless, frivolous people Americans are. And as you pt out, young people aren't even aware bks exist, and can do little more than drool in terms of having a conversation. But once again, if yr a declinist, "It's All Gd." Bring it on, say I!

mb

6:29 PM  
Anonymous Andalusian Musician said...

Looking back at the time when Russia was accused of interfering in elections in 2016, what is often forgotten is how USA interfered in Russian elections back in 1996, putting corrupt alcoholic, Yeltsin to power.
https://blackagendareport.com/us_fixed_russian_election_1996
Such a hypocrisy. Bragging about stealing elections in Time Magazine, one of the most recognized American publications.
http://content.time.com/time/subscriber/article/0,33009,984833-2,00.html
I also highly recommend a movie about this: "Spinning Boris" form 2003. Now is the age of consequences, "chickens coming home to roost". I read many years ago a statement: evil we do onto others will eventually turn against us ourselves.
At the end I want to apologize to Mr. Berman for making misleading claims about stolen elections. I think it is best to do research and make your own conclusions for myself and everyone. Take care, and hope everyone have a great day.

7:14 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Andalus-

Not only Russia. Check out work by Stephen Kinzer, along w/parts of DAA.

mb

7:46 PM  
Anonymous MPottier said...

Anytime people can racially separate they do - see prisons.
And if there were actually "white supremacy or privilege" you'd never hear about it.
Instead all you hear about is falsified criticisms of whites or European peoples.
I wouldn't be surprised if the US wasn't a white majority anymore. Sure doesn't look like it
when I'm in cities.

8:52 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Pottier-

Any data? Evidence?

Honestly, I'm getting a bit tired of discussions abt race.

mb

9:00 PM  
Blogger meangenekaz said...

Hola a los Waferes,

Global warming/Climate Change? Perhaps 50% of amerikans know it's a hoax:

https://www.wunderground.com/video/top-stories/northern-california-kelpforest-nearly-gone

Keep the focus on important stuff like Kim and Kanye.

Continuing on the subject of music and tearful emotional response, an anecdote:

The 2nd season that I observed the kelp forest up close we were in Ketchikan, Alaska. I had booked us at The Pioneer Bar. The alcoholic, hard-ass bar owner sat there next to us at the piano bar. I said: "Mike, we're ready. What would you like to hear for our sound check this morning?" He looked at the song list and pointed to "The Tennessee Waltz". When we finished the simple song I looked down at him, right there below us. There were tears streaming down his cheeks. He nodded and never said a word. We sang there four nights a week, six hours a night for the next seventeen weeks. And then sailed back to Las Vegas.

9:29 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

For those of you who continue to bombard me w/antisemitic hate-mail: I've said this on numerous occasions: I'M NOT READING YOUR MESSAGES. By word 3, I know who you are and just hit Delete. I realize that on a nationwide basis, you guys aren't exactly the sharpest nails in the box, but WTF? This is beyond stupid, and yet you apparently can't stop yrselves. I also realize that there can't be much going on in yr lives, or else you'd find better things to do w/yr time. So I guess it comes down to "haters gonna hate"--i.e., cathartic release. Meanwhile, you and I both know that there are thousands of hate-blogs out there that will honor your contributions, and your cutting-edge intellects. Wdn't you like to be applauded? Why not go where yr wanted, and needed? Here, we just regard you guys as boring douche bags. Surely 'men' of yr caliber deserve to be esteemed, no?

mb

9:40 PM  
Blogger Gunnar said...

CBS paid between 7-9 million dollars for Oprah 60 Minutes interview and the winner was...wait for it... none other than Harpo Productions (Oprah), nice work if you can get it I guess.

https://people.com/royals/cbs-paid-7-million-meghan-markle-prince-harry-interview-with-oprah-report/

10:28 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Wafers-

It's already working! No sooner do I extend bait to the antisemitic trollfoons (wh/they are too stupid to recognize as bait), then they attack! If the US contains a larger collection of clowns w/in its borders than these pathetic horses' asses, I'd frankly love to meet 'em. Dumber and dumber. Once again, poking a hedgehog lying by the side of the road w/a sharp stick, you get the expected response. Hee hee. Their real problem? No testes!

mb

11:59 PM  
Anonymous FerQ said...

To MB and Noura:

What do you believe are the reasons for magical thinking being so rampant in the US? Would they be religious fundamentalism/evangelicalism, superhero movies like Superman that were widely viewed by that population, or is it because the US still has never suffered a real invasion or a serious military defeat?

12:48 AM  
Blogger alex carter said...

CulturallyAware - You might want to check out Survivalblog. They have an "American Redoubt" planned that sounds right down your ally. While they purport to not be racist, that's just window dressing.

John S. - I agree Geisel was a man of his time. A beloved book when I was a kid, was "Seabird" by Holling C. Holling. He did a lot of really neat books with huge full-page illustrations and lots of little detail ones. "Seabird" was about the "adventures" of a seagull carved out of ivory and other materials by a young sailor in the 1800s. The book is also replete with lots of illustrations in details, many in color, of whale butchery. Fine stuff in the 1940s or 50s.

MPottier - Don't go to cities then.

MB - the quarantine's had my cooking game getting better by leaps and bounds. I need to come up with a really good recipe for chopped liver.

12:53 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

alex-

Lots of schmaltz is the key to it.

Fer-

Lots of reasons, I'm sure, and again, some of it is positive. But I'll just suggest one possibility. When I was a kid, and perhaps still today, the largest selling national newspaper was the National Enquirer. Typical headlines focused on the fantastical: UFOS DISCOVERED IN ELIZABETH TAYLOR'S BEDROOM--that sorta thing. One reason this wd be popular is that America is a scientific society; its parameters are defined by the supremacy of scientific rationality. And given the aridity of a pure scientific worldview, alternatives start to become emotionally attractive: astrology, witchcraft, ouija boards, seances, sightings of the Virgin, and the like. Magic and mystery begin to have an enormous pull, and people wanna believe there is an exit door from the scientific worldview--miracles, in a word: water to wine, defying gravity, and so on. In addition, I think it fair to say that we live in a pretty loveless society, and these alternatives can seem to inject something warm and comforting into our lives. (E.g., check out Philip Larkin's poem, "Faith Healing".)

mb

1:38 AM  
Blogger Joe McIlnen said...

Dr. Berman,
This is for the anti-Semitic trolls. The words are taken from one of Tolstoy’s famous works, The Kreutzer Sonata. Obviously our hateful, functionally illiterate trolls never have heard of Tolstoy; nor do they even know what a sonata is. LOL.
In Chapter IX, the main character Pozdnyshev says: “Just exactly as the Jews, by their pecuniary power, avenge themselves for their humiliation. ‘Ah, you want us to be merely merchants; very well, we as merchants will get you under our feet,’ say the Jews.”

But anyway, I digress. On to some Karens! LOL!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lm5S-L3grLg

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wAJXH9WaPCY

5:36 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Joe-

Well, the Shylock figure is certainly a stereotype, and I think a false one. But that's a whole other discussion, and trollfoons notwithstanding, this blog is not abt antisemitism. However I hafta admit I love the trolls; they are so stupid, and have no testicles. Where wd we be w/o them?

mb

5:41 AM  
Blogger Mike Kelly said...

Gene, always nice to hear from you. A Wafer summit in DC is an exciting prospect but I don't know if Mr. Covid will give us permission. If the stars align count me in. Dr. B, have you considered virtual summits?

8:01 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Mike-

Who knows what the covid situation will be by then...10 wks away. I'll make a decision in mid-April. As I mentioned earlier, 6 people signed up (yr #7); if 3 or more pull out, we'll hafta cancel. Let's hope not. I'm not keen on virtual anything, to be honest. Of course, we have a nice online community here, now approaching 15 yrs; but there's nothing like face-to-face engagement, if we can manage it. What I'll ask everyone to do, around mid-April, is respond to my reminder by sending me an email message, as to whether they plan to attend. If it's a go, I'll send attendees the venue, and we can all meet there on May 22 at 1pm, outside the front door.

mb

8:10 AM  
Anonymous Garcia said...

Scoop: Last summer, Operation Warp Speed was running out of money. Instead of asking Congress for more support, Trump administration officials quietly spent $10 billion out of a fund for hospitals and health care providers on Warp Speed contracts https://www.statnews.com/2021/03/02/trump-administration-quietly-spent-billions-in-hospital-funds-on-operation-warp-speed/

8:57 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Gar-

"Warped way of life" is closer to the mark, eh?

mb

9:55 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Wafers-

More and more critical analysts are saying that America has shit-for-brains, and will be punished accordingly. Here is some relevant biblio:

Losing Military Supremacy: The Myopia of American Strategic Planning: Martyanov, Andrei: 9780998694757: Amazon.com: Books

The (Real) Revolution in Military Affairs: Martyanov, Andrei: 9781949762075: Amazon.com: Books

What can one do w/a nation of complete buffoons?

mb

1:40 PM  
Anonymous CulturallyAware said...

Alex Carter if there is no substantial evidence that there are significant racial differences regarding intelligence and types of intelligence - then why are Jews so overly represented in positions of power such as elite institutions? Master race or ethnic evolutionary strategy? Why are E. Indians overly represented in IT?

2:12 PM  
Anonymous Noura said...

FerQ

I agree with Dr. Berman that magical thinking can be positive. Magical thinking in itself is neither helpful nor destructive. It’s what we do with it that gives it meaning. The problem with the kind of magical thinking I am referring to is that it’s being used to escape the reality that the American Dream doesn’t work and it’s a way of life that has serious consequences. As a result, we end up with a frivolous nation engaged in identity politics while real issues are being ignored and are growing worse (poverty, unemployment, homelessness, crumbling infrastructure, etc.). There is a constant push for infinite growth in a finite world and hardly any talk about sustainability. If there is no profit motive, nothing gets done. We don’t help the homeless because there is no money in it. We don’t invest in creating sustainable workplaces for our employees because it doesn’t seem to make money in the short term. People don’t talk to each other at work because they’re competing with each other. I’ve been impressed by the type of issues that could have been easily avoided if people just talked to each other, it’s beyond ridiculous. We ultimately can’t build a viable and sustainable society based on hustling and nothing else. Magical thinking can give us the illusion that it’s possible, but it will ultimately not protect us from the consequences of such a corrupt way of life. In this context, magical thinking is rampant because it’s a way of coping with the consequences of a hustling culture without changing our values.

The American way of life creates a corrupt environment in which meaningful solutions get retranslated into hustling. Environmental movements become greenwashing (see video below, which was banned from Youtube for a while), spirituality becomes something like in exchange for a few thousand dollars, Tony Robbins can help you find the meaning of your life.

Planet of the Humans - Full Documentary https://bit.ly/30i5Ke2

3:22 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Cult-

Yeah, yr rt; all sociological studies have confirmed that in any society that doesn't impose sharp quotas on Jews getting into universities, professions, and so on, they become the doctors, lawyers, businessmen, top advisers to the king or whatever, and so on. They are never allowed to actually go all the way up--become the president, for example--but they get onto the Supreme Court, become the security adviser to Nixon, etc. It certainly does look genetic in origin, but there may be more to it than that.

This is why, imo, the Shylock stereotype is bunk. When you arrange things so that upward mobility is impossible for Jews, then to survive, all they can do is sell shmates from pushcarts on street corners, or engage in usury w/the little $ they have. OK, you do get a Rothchild once in a blue moon, but he's hardly the norm; my family was as poor as church mice, even ate plaster off the door jambs to survive. *This* was the reality for most Jews. The only other path was (usually Talmudic) scholarship...wh/is sorta where I wound up.
T
And why *are* East Indians over-represented in IT? It's a fair question.

I am no expert on race, as must be obvious, and I haven't made much of a study of it in the US, but when I did, some yrs ago, pursue the stats, here was the order that came up on almost everything: social success, IQ, SAT's, political influence, you name it: white (w/Jews at the top of that stratum); yellow; brown; black. *Why* this wd be the case is very difficult to explain, altho there have been hundreds of bks on the black situation, giving all kinds of explanations such as broken homes, father in absentia, cumulative effect of slave history, etc. etc. I guess the (well-meaning) idea is that if we cd figure out what went wrong, we cd fix it. (E.g., yellow families enshrine a worship of scholarship, of success, combined w/tight family traditions--very hierarchical. You honor your elders.) But intellectual explanations of whatever stripe don't seem to change things very much.

So I agree, these differences are real, but the dream of social equity or egalitarianism seems very far off. I can't imagine America will ever solve its racial issues, and I'm quite sure that Bidenesque 'diversity' apptments hardly address them; they are no more than window dressing; or bandaids on cancer, if you will.

That's all I know, and as you can see, it ain't much. But I think we need to let go of these discussions on race, and focus on the subject of this blog--the Great Collapse.

mb

4:07 PM  
Anonymous John S said...

Dr. Berman, Wafers. This is the important news -actor Nicholas Cage 57, got married for the 5th time, in true Hollywood style, to a 26 year old. Kanye and the Kardashians might be feeling a little jealous especially if it becomes as a new TV show, as it should be. His last marriage lasted 4 days apparently, so if it lasts over a week, perhaps he deserves another Oscar.

https://www.msn.com/en-us/music/celebrity/it-s-true-nicolas-cage-marries-fifth-wife-26-year-old-riko-shibata-in-las-vegas-hotel-wedding/ar-BB1ejm4l?ocid=msedgdhp

Also, mega-pop superstar Ariana Grande recently released her mega-pop single “34+35” from her album aptly titled “Positions” which reached #1 on the charts. Very clever lady, add the #s up and you got the meaning smacked into your cranium. Slick crisp production values too – all that is left out are the porn scenes, but you have to leave something to the imagination if you want to be a true “artist.”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B6_iQvaIjXw

https://genius.com/Ariana-grande-34-35-lyrics

If you want to know why popular music has evolved to become complete crap, this is an informative expo, it has been orchestrated for mass consumption by music execs of course!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oVME_l4IwII

6:01 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Wafers-

I have no way of accessing the Oprah interview w/Meghan and Harry, but I just wanna go on record saying that I think the old guard at Buckingham Palace cd use a gd slapping, a Wafer Urine Treatment (WUT), and 10 yrs at a therapy camp in Northern California. A bigger collection of douche bags wd be hard to find.

mb

9:27 PM  
Blogger Arthur V. said...

Good evening Dr. Berman and Wafers:

I haven't posted in a bit but this is too good not to share:

dailykos.com/stories/2021/3/6/2019795/-Kids-told-to burn-masks-in-Idaho-What-kind-of parents-would-do-this

The crazy left wants to destroy any book, picture, movie, teacher etc. it doesn't agree with; the crazy right wants to destroy science. This will not end well.

Stay safe, all.

11:14 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Art-

We need to define 'well'. Total collapse wd fit into a declinist definition of the word. Never forget: Bad Is Gd.

mb

11:42 PM  
Anonymous FerQ said...

MB-

I see value in having faith in the non-rational and believing in the supernatural. I think having a spiritual life is great. As you said, American society is loveless, so I guess magical thinking provides some sort of safety valve or hope so I agree with you on that. Something like that is probably needed in order to deal with living in that society.

Noura-

What you mentioned about the American Dream is what I saw in the ppl in the US when I was living there. On a number of occasions I would hear Americans talking about becoming millionares as if it was something that could be guaranteed. I also used to hear them talk about positive thinking so much that it seemed like a total denial of reality. They seem to believe that there are no limits and as you said, they don't want to face the fact that their system is failing. Just like I mentioned above to Prof. Berman, I think believing in the non-rational/supernatural is something good. Having faith is great but in the American context their type of magical thinking and their expectations from life are completely separated from reality.

2:18 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Fer-

We hafta distinguish between types of magical thinking. A sense of the sacred; art and intuition; love and eros; an epiphany in nature--good. Belief in the American Dream and that someday yr ship will come in--bad (very).

mb

2:42 AM  
Blogger Quercus said...

Alex:
Thank you for bringing back my memories of the books by Holling C. Holling. They were so beautifully illustrated and they told stories of history, landscape and geography. “Seabird” was one, and also Minn of the Mississippi about a snapping turtle hatched at the source of the Mississippi and travelling down to the Gulf of Mexico, Tree in the Trail, about a cottonwood tree on the Santa Fe Trail and the history that passes by, Pagoo, about a hermit crab in a tide pool, and my favourite, Paddle-to-the-Sea, about a small figurine in a canoe carved by an Amerindian boy north of Lake Superior and how it makes a journey floating through the Great Lakes and St Lawrence to the Atlantic Ocean. And also the books illustrated by N.C. Wyeth and Howard Pyle (esp. his Robin Hood and Knights of the Round Table stories). These books were evocative and created dreams that last a lifetime.

While on childrens’ books, the Swedes have The Wonderful Adventures of Nils by Selma Lagerlöf, about a bad little boy who torments animals and as punishment he is shrunk in size, and he flies all around Sweden on the back of a goose who shows him the landscape, people and activities. It is read by so many Swedish children that it has become part of the cultural heritage and identity.

One could find racist aspects in all these books, and if Dr Seuss is offensive then nothing is safe. Not that I particularly like Dr Seuss ( I find his drawings rather crude and ungainly), but I would defend him again the Woke crowd.
(But as Aldous Huxley remarked, there is no need to ban books when nobody reads anymore)

Quercus

4:00 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Elites are trash dept.:

Regarding the Oprah interview: I was impressed by how powerful and persistent a hold the colonial mentality has on the British ruling class, leaving them cruel and callous. Impressive, in its own way.

mb

5:34 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

alex-

Cdn't run it (24-hr rule).

MB

8:01 AM  
Anonymous Glenn said...

FerQ, Noura, MB:

Most recent post on the twitter feed by the most dogmatic of scientists himself, Richard Dawkins:

"Science is not a social construct. Science’s truths were true before there were societies; will still be true after all philosophers are dead; were true before any philosophers were born; were true before there were any minds, even trilobite or dinosaur minds, to notice them."

Translation: Back in the 18thC, our prophet Carl Linnaeus descended from Mt Sinai, weathered scroll in his hands. On it, it was written, the Latin binomial, a gift bequeathed by the Science God. Still in use today, because it was Perfect, no social or historical understanding necessary to comprehend....

8:15 AM  
Anonymous James Allen said...

For those monitoring these important milestones, the following:

“The University at Albany, of the State University of New York, is changing the name of Indian Quad to Indigenous Quad and of Indian Drive to Indigenous Drive.:

https://www.insidehighered.com/quicktakes/2021/03/08/albany-will-change-name-indian-quad-indigenous-quad

Efforts to identify a Native American/Indigenous Individual/First American on one of the many reservations across this country for whom this event was even of passing interest have reportedly been unsuccessful.

9:50 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Jas-

Mon dieu! This is cutting-edge social change!

Terri-

I guess you need some help navigating this blog. 1st, we have a half-pg-max limit here, so you need to cut yr post in 2, and then send in the 1st part. Then, we have a once-every-24-hrs-max-rule, so you need to wait a day, and then send in the 2nd part. Thank you for yr cooperation.

mb

10:12 AM  
Anonymous Democritus said...

Missouri's chief douchebag, Josh Hawley, has many of his conservative supporters scratching their heads. Since he is intelligent and said all the right things before being elected to the Senate, Hawley seemed a nice contrast with the typical firebrand Republican. Now that he is in the Senate and has apparently drank Trumpi's Kool-Aid, he seems hellbent on saying outrageous things, trying to overturn elections, and basically being a dick. The article below contains interviews with many of his early supporters and friends:

https://www.nytimes.com/2021/03/07/us/politics/josh-hawley.html

They're all pondering how Hawley could have gone from the nice brainy guy they all knew and respected to the Hawley that we are blessed with today. The answer is simple: Hawley is an American. He's a hustler at heart. As long as he can rationalize any action as "American", "patriotic", or "for the Heartland", then there is no limit to what he will do and say to hold onto power. Are these people stupid? Who cares that he's intellectual--so is Ted Cruz. Being intelligent is not the same thing as being human. Hawley has no soul, like most Americans, and his friends' head scratching is just more evidence that they live in a fantasy world and refuse to accept what is staring them in the face.

A memorable quote from the article: "The Josh I knew was not an angry young person", he recalled. "But when I see him now on television, he just always seems angry--really angry." Yep. Typical American.

11:13 AM  
Anonymous Jakey said...

Support for defunding police drops to 18% of the public. Fewer than 1 in 5 support 'defund the police' movement, USA TODAY/Ipsos Poll finds https://amp.usatoday.com/amp/4599232001

4:21 PM  
Anonymous El Alamein said...

MB -

"A personal story. Yrs ago I dated a woman who was a cellist. She may have had the key to my apt., I can't remember, but one day I came home and she was there. She had put Bach's Unaccompanied Cello Suites--a vinyl LP, 1st one--on my stereo, and was listening to it (Yo Yo Ma). Tears were streaming down her face. I think she was in her early 30s. What American woman of that age, today, wd have heard of Bach, or Yo Yo Ma, or be moved to tears by that music? 20-25 women, nationwide?"

Growing up in the 90's, I attended the Prep Division of a top music school in New York. It struck me how much of the student body was either foreign-born, or children of recent immigrants, mostly from ex-Soviet or Asian countries. Meanwhile, the faculty was much more heavily American, suggesting that there was a major drop-off in interest in classical music* from the Boomer generation on down.

4:34 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Jakey-

No surprise. American political grass roots 'organization' is abt the emotion of the moment. What is a big deal one day, is off the radar screen 3 mos. later. Where are the pussy hats? OWS? The outspoken Defund The Police Movement? BLM? Well, that last one is easy: absorbed into capitalizing Black, changing the names of bldgs, giving big $ contracts to black stars, like Amanda Gorman, putting more black ads in Cosmo, and so on. The crucial fact is that Americans are very unsophisticated, and equate diversity apptments w/substantive social chg. In a word, they don' know shit from Shinola.

Here's a story for ya: when MLK was scheduled to give his famous speech on the Smithsonian Mall in 1963, RFK was concerned that not everyone wd be able to hear it. So he put the Signal Corps of the Coast Guard on to making sure all the electrical connections worked, and the speech was a great success. Now why wd he do that? Because the Power Elite is not worried abt diversity issues; they know it doesn't threaten their power, and that in fact it enhances it.

Here's the punch line, as I read it online a few mos. ago: the black pop. of the US holds the same % of national wealth in 2020 as it did in 1960. Meanwhile, white liberals and black people are in ecstasy over Kamala Harris. Holy crap on a cracker.

mb

4:42 PM  
Blogger Gunnar said...

I ask myself where we’d be if the insurrection (coup )had been successful? I’m certified insane however I have a simple theory. Trump wlda hauled ass and left jr. in charge, CNN et al would be gone, etc, but can anybody doubt we’d be at war with Iran?
1. Pompeo and friends have (and have been) clearly posturing us for war:
https://youtu.be/KAQHXf60uRo: https://youtu.be/Dv4kjT9UDBQ
2. Why were we refueling Saudi planes to attack Yemen?And did they really want that massive arms deal or are they being pressured?
https://www.defensenews.com/congress/2019/01/29/pentagon-watchdog-to-investigate-yemen-refueling/
https://youtu.be/YgivgDD2nq0
3. Like flint to a stone inflame the war in Yemen, Saudi’s/Iranians destroy each USA invades doesn’t stop until reaching the perfect position to ride out climate change and dominate the world. Check out the geography on Google earth:
Google Earth Link
In other words : The 4th Reich - one crazy guy’s theory - lots of dots to connect but 1/2 pg. rule



5:11 PM  
Blogger Joe McIlnen said...

Dr. Berman,
You’ve been had! Check out this latest hot off the ( ASSociated) press headline! Oprah still rules! Ha!Ha!Ha! Like Carly Simon’s song, “Nobody Does It Better”. LOL.

https://apnews.com/article/oprah-winfrey-meghan-markle-prince-harry-interview-811a42da13c54c7f4918b77ebf71171f

And of course, this was ALL IMPORTANT news here in our Dysfunctional States of America. LOL!

7:01 PM  
Blogger dermot said...

Re: BLM, an incandescent attack by a black American:
https://ghionjournal.com/examples-of-how-black-activism-failed/

The only people who profit from these campaigns of grievance and woe-is-me victimhood are the very charlatans who are sitting in the lap of comfort and leading lives of true privilege...There is a reason, after all, the Obamas were compensated to the tune of $60 million and why Ta-Nehisi Coates keeps landing on the New York Times bestsellers list...
The leaders of BLM have perfected the art of the shakedown...they have made more money in our names and using our pains than any black organization since the NAACP. What do we have to show for the hundreds of millions they have collected since Ferguson?...Far from being freedom fighters, BLM is a co-op of fee collectors who hear cash registers ringing each time a “black” man or woman gets killed by a cop...
They rush to the crime scene when the camera lights are on only to vacate the hood once the last mic is no longer hot. What is sad is that we keep falling for these bamboozles...the supposed “talented tenth” that DuBois envisioned would lead “black” people to the promised land have instead weaponized our struggles to enrich themselves and impoverish their followers. They offer no original ideas or rallying cries worth fighting for; they just throw out inane talking points as if sloganeering is enough to defeat generations of systemic racism that has decimated the hopes of “black” folks in America.

8:17 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Cult-

You really need to find another topic, amigo. Yr latest post contained not a shred of evidence; and I'm certainly not going to post antisemitic remarks like the ones you made (again, w/no proof whatsoever). Maybe you'd be better off w/another blog...

dermot-

A cogent essay, altho I don't like his use of the word 'Sambos' and his claim that there is no such thing as white privilege in America. But otherwise, he's gd at revealing the hustling/con side of BLM. (This is America, after all.)

Joe-

Not clear how I've been had.

mb

8:59 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Wafers-

Scroll back, check on the trollfoon baiting message I sent in. God did it work! Talk abt dopes; these clowns don't know when they're being had. The response was that I was hit w/an avalanche of morons. Why, amigos, why? Because THEY HAVE NO TESTES. These are ball-less cowards. They are not men. What's not to enjoy? Keep it coming, you gutless wonders.

mb

9:56 PM  
Blogger alex carter said...

Quercus - Holling C. Holling also did The Book Of The Indians which was a black and white collection of stories of characters in various Indian tribes. All of his books were excellent and in Paddles-To-The-Sea, that illustration of the kid carving Paddles out, chips all over the bearskin he's laying on, I thought, I would get in so much trouble if I did that!

Cult - your username says it all - it's not race, it's culture. If you took a Black newborn right out of Africa and raised him in a family of Hasidic Talmud scholars, the kid would quite likely become a Talmud scholar too and probably quite a good one. Kevin MacDonald is a hack leaning on his tenure and if there was anything to "race science" why aren't guys like Dawkins all over it.

In other words, don't get suckered in: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sAu41SpYtl4&t=13s

11:48 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

alex-

I need to start censoring messages abt race, antisemitic or not. Pretty boring at this pt, esp. for a blog that is focused on something else. You wanna get Americans all hot and bothered? Talk abt race. (You'd think sex wd be more interesting, but no...) Meanwhile, the trollfoons continue to bombard, oblivious of the fact that I deliberately baited them, and also told them I wdn't be rdg their posts. What dummies. I poked the hedgehog w/a sharp stick, and it emerges, howling in rage. I tell ya, the Douche Bag Factor (DBF) in America is probably thru the roof, at this pt. Read my new bk: "Clowns and Dolts in the Postmodern Age."

mb

6:00 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Wafers-

Gd essay on Thorstein Veblen in NYRB for Jan. 14.

mb

7:16 AM  
Anonymous Bright said...

Jimmy Kimmel takes to the streets of Hollywood, asking passersby to name a book. Any book. https://huffpost.com/us/entry/us_603f75bfc5b6d7794ae31f44/

It doesn't turn out well.

7:28 AM  
Anonymous Ricardo said...

Richard Dawkins writes really silly things about science and philosophy

https://figsinwinter.medium.com/richard-dawkins-writes-really-silly-things-about-science-and-philosophy-d3e3bb4948

9:07 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Ricardo-

Gd essay. I dealt w/some of these issues many yrs ago, in my Reenchantment bk. It still holds up, in many ways, altho looking back I wd hafta admit I was a bit too subjective in my approach. But hopefully, like science, we grow and learn.

Bright-

Link failed.

mb

9:24 AM  
Anonymous Democritus said...

American billionaire--and Walton family member--Stan Kroenke owns the largest ranch in Canada, a vast swath of grazing land that also encloses two publicly owned lakes that were restored using tax dollars and has a link with indigenous history. Kroenke has refused public access to the lakes. He was sued by a non-profit and lost, but then he won on appeal. This asshole, who isn't even a Canadian citizen and has probably never even seen the lakes, basically takes ownership of public lands and the courts back him up. Not only that--the court's decision also makes the non-profit liable for Kroenke's legal bills. Not to worry though, they have deep pockets. Their legal fund has received mass injections of capital from...picnics and raffles. Typical American dickhead.

https://www.thedailybeast.com/stan-kroenke-wins-legal-battle-over-lake-access-with-nicola-valley-fish-and-game-club?source=articles&via=rss

10:16 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Demo-

I guess he's an honorary American.

mb

10:47 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Note to John-

Pls don't send messages to older posts. No one reads them. Thanks.

mb

12:15 PM  
Anonymous Jameson said...

In response to Alex Carter a different look at old time propaganda agendas in film:

https://cdn.lbryplayer.xyz/api/v4/streams/free/2021-03-07-01-12-53/8b50f54a15456da0d56e9c2049ab053ea49acfaf/fb9f74

12:30 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Jameson-

Wd be great if we cd leave race behind, and go on to issues like collapse of American empire. Thanks.

mb

12:38 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Asshole in action: What a twit:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w0bU-l__BPs

Never forget that the elite are trash. They aren't better than you; in fact, they're a whole lot worse.

mb

12:41 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Note to Trollfoons:

Why the sudden silence? Let me prod you a bit more. This blog is evidence that Jews rule the world. Here I am, running a blog and trying to make the world a better place. What, in contrast, are you doing? Issuing pathetic antisemitic hit and run attacks on me (a Jew) and the blog. So who's in charge here, really? Can't u.c. that I'm running you? In terms of every category of human value, snotnose, I'm way up on the ladder and yr way down. You see that, rt? And why is that the case? Because I have large, powerful testes, and you have none. Yr not a man! Now what, shmuckface? More antisemitic hit and run attacks? YOU ARE NOT A MAN.

mb

ps: Wafers: if this doesn't get them crawling out from under their rocks, nothing will!

12:46 PM  
Anonymous Mavis said...

A friend that's a former marine contractor sends me stuff like this all the time. The temperature's goin up !

PACIFIC DETERRENCE INITIATIVE - U.S PLANS TO DEPLOY MISSILES WEST OF THE INTERNATIONAL DATE LINE !
https://youtube.com/watch?v=G9LLtmOwI3g&feature=youtu.be

PENTAGON HAS AWARDED A $42 MILLION CONTRACT TO BUILD A STANDOFF WEAPONS COMPLEX ON GUAM !

https://youtube.com/watch?v=P4VwoyuZ7II&feature=youtu.be

2:05 PM  
Anonymous Noura said...

I’ve been having discussions lately with people who’ve expressed their frustrations at people in position of power for being incapable of grasping the simple truth expressed in the quote below. I’ve been wondering if the issue is incompetence, not caring, or a combination of both.

The Fate of Empires - Sir John Glubb - Listen on Youtube: https://bit.ly/3qkJbQQ or Read here: https://bit.ly/2XKKIDr . From the section titled “The inadequacy of intellect: “Perhaps the most dangerous by-product of the Age of Intellect is the unconscious growth of the idea that the human brain can solve the problems of the world. Even on the low level of practical affairs this is patently untrue. Any small human activity, the local bowls club or the ladies’ luncheon club, requires for its survival a measure of self- sacrifice and service on the part of the members. In a wider national sphere, the survival of the nation depends basically on the loyalty and self-sacrifice of the citizens. The impression that the situation can be saved by mental cleverness, without unselfishness or human self-dedication, can only lead to collapse… there are times when the perhaps unsophisticated self-dedication of the hero is more essential than the sarcasms of the clever.”

If social collapse has already occurred in the America, then financial collapse will probably deliver the final blow. It seems to me that the issue of frivolity, like the identity politics we see in the news, is also happening at the micro level.

3:01 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Irene-

Sorry, a bit too antisemitic for this blog. Usual conflation of Judaism w/Zionism. I am opposed to the latter; I'm very much in favor of the former.

Noura-

Misplaced faith in technology is also a part of our collapse. See WAF, ch. 3.

Mavis-

The dumber the activity, the faster our decline.

Wafers-

I've started to delete messages abt race, from whatever political position. I can only be so bored b4 I'm ready to shoot myself.

mb

6:18 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Why in the world do we need the British monarchy, who are little more than a collection of expensively dressed clothes horses? What they need is slapping, then urine, then abolishment.

https://edition.cnn.com/2021/03/09/uk/buckingham-palace-response-harry-meghan-gbr-intl/index.html

Meanwhile, more on One Great Asshole:

https://edition.cnn.com/2021/03/09/media/good-morning-britain-piers-morgan-leaving-after-walk-out/index.html

In this case, I think a severe beating is in order, and then being thrown on a dung heap.

mb

6:42 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Note to Mo-

Let me explain how this blog works. This is not a place to just broadcast your opinions. Why shd anyone care what you think? I personally don't give a plate of rancid couscous what you think. In the future, please state a specific thesis you have about the collapse of America, and then provide links or refs to reliable books or articles that support yr argument. Do you think you can do that? If not, pls have the courtesy to not waste our time, leave this blog, and find another one. Shukran.

mb

7:30 PM  
Anonymous Rollo Dice said...

I hope I send this in time! Our boy Trump wants all the funds
to be sent to him, not to the GOP. So if you are also using his
name to get funds for WIC, Wafer International Conspiracy, you
may hear from his lawyers.
https://ca.news.yahoo.com/republicans-hit-back-trump-saying-075729239.html

7:38 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Rollo-

Gd to know. The WIC is alive and well, and richly funded by millions of admirers. In the meantime, I wd like to take Prince Charles and Piers Morgan and bang their heads together on nationwide TV for 20 uninterrupted minutes:

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/picture/2021/mar/09/steve-bell-on-harry-saying-charles-stopped-taking-his-calls-cartoon

mb

7:44 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Wafers-

I studied classical guitar for 3 yrs. This was one of my favorite pieces. Unfortunately, way over my head; it defeated me. But Bream was victorious:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SzV_pd7g_gQ

mb

8:40 PM  
Blogger NeilW said...

Dr Berman, Great Seer, Slava's Cello-Guitar Suites: Enjoy https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ay8E1IjvzrI

8:40 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Neil-

What a rush. I think this was the piece that my girlfriend of yrs back was crying over. Thank you. ps: Do you have any idea what it's like, to have the burden of being a Great Seer?

mb

9:18 PM  
Anonymous EricGenrallie said...

You're a dumb ugly kike own your stupid immoral tasteless horse-shit.

4:45 AM  
Anonymous Dr. Shithouse said...

"EricGenrallie"-you are a true american.

Now, go out and "vote." -That will show em.

8:13 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Wafers-

Just wanted to show you guys the type of crap the antisemitic trollfoons come up with. These folks are so stupid; playing them is like shooting fish in a barrel. I just poke the hedgehog, and out they come, roaring w/venom, w/no awareness that they were being set up.

Eric-

Thanks for validating my baiting technique. God, are you gullible or what? Let's be clear on the diffs between myself and the rest of you sad and bitter people. Who is running a blog that has been a source of help or insight to thousands (something like 90,000 hits per month now), and who has no more arrows in their quiver beyond "you dumb ugly kike"? Who is the man, and who is the bitter adolescent? Is this really going to be the rest of yr life? Yes, and I'll tell you why: YOU HAVE NO TESTES. YR NOT A MAN. And deep down in your hurting heart, you know this, rt? How awful it must be, to live in such shame and self-hatred!

mb

8:15 AM  
Anonymous Philippe said...

Global Action Is ‘Very Far’ From What’s Needed to Avert Climate Chaos

https://www.nytimes.com/2021/02/26/climate/paris-agreement-emissions-targets.html

8:23 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

ps: Wafers: If you have any advice or therapy to give Eric (and numerous others), to help him out of the dark hole in wh/he lives, feel free to assist the poor bugger in any way you can. As we Jews say, it wd be a mitzvah.

"Eric, Eric,
Bo-er-ley, bo-na-na fanna
Fo-er-ley. Fee fi mo-er-ley, Eric!"

(Shirley Ellis, "The Name Game")

"He's a rebel and he'll never ever be any good
He's a rebel 'cause he's an antisemitic turd
But just because he's a pile of human garbage
That's no reason why we can't give poor Eric all our love..."

(With apologies to The Crystals)

Eric: Can ya see it, that yr a douche bag?

mb

8:29 AM  
Anonymous Awais said...

He’s Too Mentally Ill to Execute. Why Is He Still on Death Row After 45 Years?

https://www.themarshallproject.org/2021/02/04/he-s-too-mentally-ill-to-execute-why-is-he-still-on-death-row-after-45-years

8:47 AM  
Blogger Gunnar said...

Laugh at them MB, bullies hate to be laughed at, as reference check out Mel Brooks “Hitler on Ice,”

https://youtu.be/9Ep_glbC_gs

So this happened in Douglas County (home of the happily retired military elite (insert your own epithet here) most if not all I’ve met are truly awful people.

https://www.denverpost.com/2021/03/09/douglas-county-school-resource-officers-arrest-child-autism/

9:09 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Awais, Gunnar-

The poison that runs in American veins is very deep, and nationwide.

mb

9:55 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Meanwhile, Douche Bag of the Year Award goes to...

https://pagesix.com/2021/03/10/piers-morgan-doubles-down-on-meghan-markle-comments/

10:06 AM  
Anonymous John S said...

The NY Times finally says something I can agree with -abolish the monarchy! Of course, it is flavored with pro-American propaganda – look we aren’t as bad as the British, after 4 yrs of Trump. Give me a break!

https://www.nytimes.com/2021/03/09/opinion/meghan-harry-abolish-monarchy.html

12:31 PM  
Blogger Miles Deli said...

Greetings MB and Wafers,

MB-

What more can u say to these antisemitic trollfoons? My take is that right now there are millions of Americans engaged in doing absolutely nothing important, except participating in a form of mass masturbation. I would also argue that they've been glued to their cell fones for the duration of the pandemic, and are being driven batshit crazy by them. It's a cycle of a joke population w/a joke future, oozing their joke noodles and tiny nuts, eyeballing their joke devices.

Meanwhile, here's a pretty gd film: "Seberg" starring Kristen Stewart. Here's a review:

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/12/12/movies/seberg-review-kristen-stewart.html

Miles

12:35 PM  
Blogger Alan said...

Here is another great video from THE EUROPEAN. "Eleven Reasons America is Not Great".

He actually gives many more.

Hope you enjoy it.

12:42 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Demo-

Sorry, cdn't run it (over half-pg limit).

Alan-

Link?

Jeff-

Seberg: Good ol' FBI. Wonderful people. As for the trollfoons: endless entertainment. Even w/o testes, they spend all their time beating off.

mb

1:54 PM  
Anonymous James Allen said...

News from the [Culture] Front...
[The early Vegas line has Elmer J. Fudd (speech impediment) odds on favorite to get the hook, followed closely by Foghorn Leghorn (Southern rooster, by definition racist).].

“[Theodore Seuss] “Ted” Geisel and [Warner Brothers cartoonist par excellence] Chuck Jones, late friends turned creative collaborators during World War II and again many years later for such TV classics as 1966’s “How the Grinch Stole Christmas!,” are again under cultural scrutiny. . After the news that six of Geisel’s Dr. Seuss books would cease publication because of racist and insensitive imagery, Jones’s Pepe Le Pew has brought Looney Tunes into the culture war over which classic children’s characters are so problematic that they should be updated or disappeared.

The Seuss announcement came last Tuesday on the anniversary of Geisel’s birthday (though the decision was made last year). That controversy prompted New York Times columnist Charles Blow to write a piece headlined, “Six Seuss Books Bore a Bias.” The column noted that some of the first cartoon characters Blow remembers seeing while young are Pepe Le Pew, who “normalized rape culture,” and Speedy Gonzales, whose friends “helped popularize the corrosive stereotype of the drunk and lethargic Mexicans.”

https://www.washingtonpost.com/arts-entertainment/2021/03/09/pepe-le-pew/

3:03 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Jas-

Since everything in the US is tainted by racial or gender bias, or other types of bias, the most efficient approach wd be to tear everything in the country down. And I mean everything. I support this enlightened movement.

mb

4:00 PM  
Blogger Arthur V. said...

Good evening Dr. Berman and Wafers:

Apparently, in the Woke world one has to feel guilty about everything.

alternet.org/2021/03/vaccine-guilt/

And on the subject of book banning, may I suggest two of my favorites: Dracula by Bram Stoker, the lead character is obviously a rapist; and more to the point Moby Dick by Herman Melville, in which Captain Ahab is handicapped and insane. Is the Melville suggesting that handicapped people are insane? Looks like that to me. I'm waiting for someone to make these moronic arguments. It shouldn't be long.

5:43 PM  
Anonymous Glans Butterworth, III said...

Forget no universal health care, employment at will doctrines, FATCA, citizen-based double taxation, endless war mongering, 1000+ overseas military bases, huge student loans, etc..etc..

https://www.malaymail.com/news/life/2021/03/10/stuntman-soaks-in-bean-dip-for-24-hours-to-save-favourite-restaurant/1956432

This is what US-ians care about!

5:56 PM  
Anonymous Mike R. said...

Dr. Berman, please find the video Wafer Alan maybe referring to:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?app=desktop&v=ieTGIDWwAoM&t=317s

6:05 PM  
Anonymous Nadine Bupkis said...

MB,

In all seriousness, these SJWs have an infantile view of reality. Thinking a perfect civilization will magically appear once you destroy everything you don't like is most certainly the worldview of an infant. When babies throw tantrums and break things, their parents, who seem like magical beings to them, intervene and make everything perfect again. It's easy to see why SJWs think like babies: most SJWs come from very affluent yet spiritually impoverished backgrounds, and have little experience with the working class they claim to support.

The woke movement is deeply in bed with the corporate state the military-industrial complex, as evidenced by the Democratic Party's embrace of woke politics and woke ideology. Many of its leaders, like Robin DiAngelo and Ta-Nehisi Coates, have grown very rich from peddling their ideas, and haven't given much to those who actually need it - the poor and the homeless. They support crooked, warmongering Democratic politicians, and condemn those who vote for true progressives like Ralph Nader or Jill Stein. And yet, the movement claims to stand for peace, justice, compassion, equality, etc.

This certainly qualifies as peddling a snake oil ideology to amass wealth and power. How is this different from L. Ron Hubbard, Rush Limbaugh or Joel Osteen?

6:22 PM  
Anonymous Carino said...

In a new documentary, BBC Brazil went undercover to show how illegal land grabbers are moving in on public land in the Brazilian Amazon. The documentary showed plots of public land being openly advertised on Facebook.
https://news.mongabay.com/2021/03/facebook-enabling-amazon-land-grabbing-deforestation-investigation/

6:37 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Carino-

Zuckershmuck: a great human being.

Nadine-

Once again, we're interested in evidence here, not just opinion. Yr 2nd para cd be rt, but it cd certainly benefit from some substantiation.

Mike R.-

Great video, thanks. Only a collection of schmos cd believe the US is No. 1.

Art-

Note ref to "The Berman Center." News to me. Meanwhile, it's time to scrap every American cultural artifact, as I said above (see reply to James).

Wafers-

I triggered an avalanche of antisemitic trollfoons! My God, are these people dumb. You tell them explicitly that yr baiting them, and do they walk away? No! They take the bait! And the poison that fills the 'hearts' of these pieces of trash! A declinist's dream, really. What cd be better? A country in which millions of bitter, ball-less men sit around pounding their meat--shit, bring it on! The more of them, the better.

mb

7:28 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

ps: I mean, ya gotta love it:

https://www.theguardian.com/books/2021/mar/10/not-suitable-catalan-translator-for-amanda-gorman-poem-removed

7:34 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Wafers-

Walter LaFeber just died. A great man, and a great loss.

mb

7:50 PM  
Anonymous Seneca’s Cliff said...

I consider it a high honor and a highlight of my college life to have been able to take course from professor LaFeber, even though I was an engineer. An old school intellectual of the highest order. I Remember when I was a sophomore professor LaFeber was scheduled to give an open lecture on a Friday Night at the exact same time as the the Gratefull Dead were playing a few blocks away in Barton Hall. Every one I knew went to see Walter and he filled every one of the 1100 seats in Bailey Hall while the Dead had empty seats left. As you might guess that was a long time ago and America has gone down hill since then. I fear that today one of the Kardashians would outdraw this academic giant.

10:42 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Seneca-

I wonder what yr that was. In 1971 I was an asst prof at Rutgers; a colleague of mine was scheduled to give a talk on the VN war at Shippensburg--state college or university, I can't remember what it was called--and cdn't make it. Asked me to fill in. We were assigned some drab, no-account rm; 5 people showed up for the talk, and 4 were faculty members. Next door was the gym, where a 1950s sock hop was in progress. It was jammed. I gave my lecture, and returned to NJ. It's now 50 yrs later...I can't help wondering how many girls at the sock hop subsequently got pregnant, and gave birth to children who, 20 yrs later, had never even heard of VN. As for readers of Walter's powerful bks over the yrs: I doubt that more than .00000001% of the American population have read any of them. But yr rt: Kim reigns supreme, and Kanye, one of the greatest douche bags in the history of the world, is venerated as a god.

And when I tell Americans that the country is finished--they laugh!

mb

11:04 PM  
Blogger Jason Tower said...

Cancel culture has been busy this week. First Dr Seuss, then Dumbo, now ice cream Jimmies are banned.

https://www.msn.com/en-us/foodanddrink/foodnews/this-massachusetts-ice-cream-changed-its-name-because-of-racist-connotations/ar-BB1esBHm?ocid=BingNewsSearch

On a happier note, this month marks twenty years since I discovered Dr. Berman and his work. I saw a stack of "Twilight of American Culture" hardcovers on the new release table at Borders Books in Portland and bought a copy. It opened my eyes to what was wrong with the USA, and why I had trouble connecting with Americans. Thank you, and I hope you write many more books!

11:29 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Jason-

Ah, the gd ol' days, when Borders was still around. As far as writing bks after "Twilight," plug my name into Amazon. This cd keep u busy for a while. :-)

Art-

Irene posted this one a while back. Here was my reply:

Sorry, a bit too antisemitic for this blog. Usual conflation of Judaism w/Zionism. I am opposed to the latter; I'm very much in favor of the former.

Speaking of antisemitism: more trollfoons! Nothing can stop them, altho they have no testes. Ha ha, trollfoons: you have no testes!

mb

6:23 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Gosh I'm so surprised dept.:

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2021/mar/11/minneapolis-promised-change-after-george-floyd-instead-its-geared-up-for-war

6:43 AM  
Blogger alex carter said...

The anti-Semitic trollfoons need to learn when they're beat: https://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/food-and-drink/fish-and-chips-jewish-history-immigrants-uk-london-a9548301.html

And on the other side of the world: https://www.sfgate.com/food/article/You-Can-Blame-Portugal-For-Japanese-Tempura-2916045.php

Me, I'm still working on that "best" (for me) chopped liver recipe...

7:07 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

alex-

Nice article. It's clear that the Jews are everywhere and run everything. This is as it shd be. As for the trollfoons: it's hard, when you are trash, to perceive yrselves as trash. So I fear these stinky little pieces of garbage will be with us for a long time yet. Ball-less wonders, all of them.

mb

8:02 AM  
Anonymous Pastrami and Coleslaw said...

"Since everything in the US is tainted by racial or gender bias, or other types of bias, the most efficient approach wd be to tear everything in the country down."

Yet another one in the saga of a poor poet:

https://www.theguardian.com/books/2021/mar/10/not-suitable-catalan-translator-for-amanda-gorman-poem-removed

10:10 AM  
Blogger Gunnar said...

What a good guy with a gun (this time multiple good guys with long guns) looks like in action. Dead @ 15, USA!

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2021/03/10/stavian-rodriguez-shooting-5-oklahoma-city-police-officers-charged/6945418002/

10:47 AM  
Blogger Brian said...

Folks,
A new article title in the NYT today:

"With Relief Plan, Biden Takes on a New Role: Crusader for the Poor"


https://www.nytimes.com/2021/03/11/us/politics/biden-stimulus.html?action=click&module=Top%20Stories&pgtype=Homepage


Up is down and left is right, all that matters is that the pampered professional classes feel that everything is on the right track. A triumph of Democracy and technocratic superhuman grace to get this darn thing passed. Now we just need to get the min wage to a reasonable $11$ and all will be solved.

11:03 AM  
Blogger Alan2102 said...


just published:

https://thesaker.is/book-review-disintegration-by-andrei-martyanov/
Book review: “Disintegration” by Andrei Martyanov
March 01, 2021

11:08 AM  
Anonymous Das Schmeckt said...

Hey all,
I'm currently reading Vance Packard's "the Waste Makers". Here's a snippet of a review on amazon.ca: "This book is a real eye opener and helps us to understand just how we've been duped by manufacturers and big business into buying products we don't need, or buying products we already have, by planned obsolesence. If you were angry at the constant new products that make perfectly good products obsolete, say such as VHS to DVD, or records to CD's you've got good reason. If you're angry at overpackaging this book will make you livid at it."
https://www.amazon.ca/dp/B005OVHF8K/ref=dp-kindle-redirect?_encoding=UTF8&btkr=1

12:12 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Ja, Das schmeckt!

I think I discuss Packard at some length in WAF; esp. "The Hidden Persuaders."

12:39 PM  
Anonymous Malleus Maleficarum said...

Well, sorry but I can't help the Schadenfreude at the Catalan translator of Amanda Gorman, since Catalan nationalists have been playing the victim card for 40 years while in reality stirring the most retrograde form of ethnic nationalism and considering themselves superior to the rest of Spaniards.

No links, I'm afraid, just my opinion but I really couldn't help myself. Apologies.

PS Just because I'm listening to Nirvana, a beautiful quote by Kurt:
“If you’re really a mean person you’re going to come back as a fly and eat poop.” – Kurt Cobain

1:19 PM  
Anonymous John S said...

Dr. Berman, Wafers. A couple snippets. Found a nice talk by Michael Parenti titled “The darker myths of empire” from 2005. He compares how the Roman and British empire have similarities with the American empire and how the real question is who are the beneficiaries of empires (ruling class of course), which defines the real purpose of empires. I had never heard of Parenti before watching it, but it echoes many of the themes discussed on this blog, even if a bit dated – the analysis is still spot on.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OOF56wYTl1w

If anyone hasn’t seen Errol Morris excellent documentary “The Fog of War” which is basically a long conversation with Robert McNamara, here it is. Joseph Conrad could have been writing about this guy, really dark stuff and it is about much more than just McNamara, but about the culture of America that creates people like McNamara.

https://watchdocumentaries.com/the-fog-of-war/

1:28 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

John-

Except I think Morris let McNamara off the hook too easily: "mistakes were made." My ass. YOU were the mistake, you fucking war criminal. 3 million peasants dead, tens of thousands tortured. This was on you. Rot in hell, you shithead.

Malleus-

Hopefully Kurt's line will apply to McNamara. As for Catalonia: I'm of 2 minds abt this. I like their resistance to being incorporated into Greater Spain, so long as their values are really different. Visca Catalunya! But then, after 400 yrs of stupid wars, it seemed gd that the E.U. joined together.

mb

1:55 PM  
Anonymous Dr. Shithouse said...

Corporate american was awesome-through hard work, grit, and determination, anyone can "make" it....

https://www.legalreader.com/california-panda-express-strip-underwear-loyalty/

2:41 PM  
Blogger Alan said...


Sorry, cut and paste failure. Let's try again.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ieTGIDWwAoM

This is a video posted by THE EUROPEAN on how Americans think they live in the greatest country in the world.

3:28 PM  
Anonymous James Watrous said...

Dr. Berman,
Dictatorship of relativism is a term used by some Catholic theologians, including Joseph Ratzinger a.k.a. Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI. I don't know if you heard the term while teaching at Catholic University of America. (I am Catholic btw.) Sometimes some of these theologians may go overboard with this idea. Yet, your post points out that there is a lot of relativism going on in this country and we live in a society that no longer understands truth. Holocaust deniers are a good example. We have tons of evidence that the Holocaust happened, that approximately six million Jews were murdered, not to mention the thousands of non-Jews (such as Pols, Slavs, and homosexuals) murdered too. Yet, there are people out there who think the whole thing is a hoax. Of course Trump claiming the election was stolen from him is another example. Obviously, the man is a sore loser, but he is also a habitual liar. People are crazy enough to believe him.
One other thing that is pissing me off is the attacks on Asian Americans in this country, especially in the San Francisco Bay Area where I live. I do like the fact that a 75 year old Asian American woman in Oakland fought back against her attacker and beat the hell out of him with her walking stick, sending him to the hospital. Of course we just had this mass shooting in Georgia, where eight people are dead, six of them Asian American women. Whether the attack was racially motivated is yet to be known. Obviously, the young man who went on this shooting spree had some major problems. It wouldn't surprise me if he is mentally ill. Yet, our country won't even think about strong gun laws. You think the Columbine shooting, which happened over 20 years ago would have caused a major reform in gun laws in this country, but it didn't.

3:53 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

James-

Thanks for writing in. Since yr new, I shd tell u that it's best to send messages to the latest post, as no one reads the older stuff.

mb

4:28 PM  

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